Skip to main content

Full text of "Mathura A District Memoir"

See other formats



outside; and rice versa. Thus at the great temple of Gohind Deva the central
dome of the nave (or porch as Mr, Fergnsson very inappropriately calls it) is
perfect; but it is impossible to determine from thence with any certainly what
would hare been the outline and proportions of the tower that the architect
proposed to raise over it I have no question in my own &ind -that the origin
of the sikhara is to "be found in the Buddhist stupa. Nor do Ldetect any violent
break in the development. The lower story of the modern temple which, though
most commonly square^ is occasionally, as in the Madan Mohan and Eadh4
Ballabh examples, an octagon^ and therefore a near approach to a- circle^ is repre-
sented by the masonry plinth of the relic-mound; the high curvilinear roof by
lie swelling contour of the earthen Mil, and the pinnacle with its peculiar base
by the BiiddMsi rails and umbrella on the top of a Dagoba. From the original
stuga to the temple of Parsvanath at Khajurao of the llth century, the towers
of Madan Mohan and Jngai Klishor at Brinda-ban of the 16th, and the tempi©
of Vishveshvar at Banaras, the gradation seems to be easy and continuous.

From a note at the foot of page 32 of his 'Cave Temples* it appears that
Mr. Fergnsson has been rather nettled by my exposure of his frequent inaccu-
racies and—having no excuse to offer—attempts to divert attention from them
by ridiculing tie view I have here advanced as to the origin of the sikkara,
From the nature of the case it is simply a theory,—and whether it be right

or wrong—fn its integrity it must be incap-
able of positive proof. He is therefore not
bound to accept it; but it certainly is rash of
him to maintain, as a counter-theory, that the
Brindaban sikharas are the result of an
attempt on the part of Hindu architects to
assimilate- with their own traditional forms
the novel beauty of the Muhammadan dome.
!The suggestion is absurd and admits of the
easiest refutation, nor do I for a moment sup-
pose that Mr. Fergusson ever seriously enter-
tained it : it is simply employed as a polemical
diversion. The type of an Orissan temple in
the 6th and 7th centuries AJX, while Bud-
dhism was still a power in the land and long
before the Muhammadans had ever entered
it, is illustrated by Dr. Eajendra Lai Mitra
in his fiIndo-Aryans?' by a wood-cut which is
copied in the margin. It will be seen that the